Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.

Pollen is a community comprised of civic-minded connectors who share ideas, career and civic engagement opportunities and peer-to-peer recognition to create positive impact and personal and professional growth for its members.

Pollen newsletter Volume 23

Pollen is a community comprised of civic-minded connectors who share ideas, career and civic engagement opportunities and peer-to-peer recognition to create positive impact and personal and professional growth for its members.

Networking is a new MinnPost section that features Pollen, a networking newsletter for professionals written by Lars Leafblad of KeyStone Search, an executive search firm in Minneapolis.

Lars Leafblad
Lars Leafblad

Pollen vol 23
December 13, 2010
Curated by Lars Leafblad
Principal, KeyStone Search


Welcome to Pollen volume 23!

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For those of you just joining us…a quick recap of just what Pollen is…

“Pollen is a community comprised of civic-minded connectors who share ideas, career and civic engagement opportunities and peer-to-peer recognition to create positive impact and personal and professional growth for its members.”

Pollen volume 1 was shared with members on December 4, 2009. We’ve since grown to 1,602

subscribers to this twice monthly e-newsletter and 1,509 members of our Pollen LinkedIn group. Become member 1,510 by clicking this secure link.

If someone has forwarded this to you and you’d like to become a full-fledged Pollenite, which provides you with the opportunity to contribute content for distribution to the entire Pollen network, join by emailing

POLLEN included in MINNESOTA BUSINESS “2010 Minnesota Business Encyclopedia”!!

The Pollen community was singled out by Drew Wood, Editor, of Minnesota Business magazine, in their “2010 Minnesota Business Encyclopedia” which is a “look at 142 of the most notable people, places, companies, topics and trends affecting the greater Minnesota business community this year.”

Click the link and then scroll down to the “P” section to read more.

Congrats to many Pollenites and/or their respective organizations/companies on making the list as well including The LEAD Project, Jeff Nolan, Nancy Lyons, Jamie Thingelstad (Alvenda), Chadburn Blomquist (TEDxTC), Uri Neren, Jeremy Lenz (BioBusiness Alliance of MN), Bill George, MOJO MN (Ernest Grumbles, Brad Lehrman et al).

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Thanks Drew and Minnesota Business for helping us continue to expand the Pollen community and thanks to everyone reading this who has built this network together over the past year!



Women In Networking (WIN) has secured internationally acclaimed sales expert – Kim Duke, CEO and Founder of The Sales Divas – for the Destined to WIN Conference on January 27, 2011 at the Continuing Education and Conference Center,
1890 Buford Ave., 
Saint Paul. Details and registration can be found at

Duke’s keynote presentation entitled “Savvy Sales Secrets for Lower Stress and Higher Profits” reflects her philosophies of transforming the sales process to building unique relationships with customers. Twin Cities business women will profit from this in-person presentation where Duke will outline ways participants can attract more clients and be more effective at selling without being pushy.

In addition, the Destined To WIN Conference assembles a variety of resources to support the success of women in business. Attendees may elect to attend variety of educational workshops and visit with a wide variety of professional service and product providers at the Expo. (via Emily Schroeder)



American Public Media/Minnesota Public Radio has several open positions in development and program production

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Augsburg College seeks Media and News Services Director (via Rebecca John)

Brain Traffic hiring Lead Content Strategist

CaringBridge.orgis hiring for several positions in finance, marketing, and product management. For more information, please visit: (via Sona Mehring)

Children’s HeartLink seeks Development Intern

Emergency Foodshelf Network seeks new Director of Resource Development

GovDeliveryhas several new roles open in sales and marketing. Learn more: (via Tasha Hock)

Hennepin County Bar Association/Foundationseeks new Executive Director (via Marshall Lichty)

The Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies seeks Technical Support Specialist

Minnesota Community Foundation and The Saint Paul Foundation seek Administrative Assistant to the Chief of Staff

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Minnesota High Tech Association seeks Manager of Communications (via Peter Lindstrom)

Minnesota Hospital Association seeks Director of State Government Relations and several other positions (via Ann Gibson)

Northwest Area Foundation seeks Program Assistant

Priority Integrated Marketing seeks User Interface Designer (via Brian Bierbaum)

UnitedHealth Groupseeks Online Content Manager (via Mary Harpin)

WeatherNation seeks Web Developer and Systems/Network Engineer (via Chris Mayr) – interested candidates should contact Todd Frostad at

Wilder Foundationseeks Manager, Services to Others



Are you passionate about youth work and the wilderness? YMCA Camp Warren is seeking new board members and volunteers for upcoming terms. The mission of YMCA Camp Warren is to provide transformational experiences in a single-gender environment emphasizing character development, self-reliance and leadership skills. If interested, please contact Emilie Hitch at

Pollenites should bookmark the “Board Openings” posted by the Management Assistance Program for Nonprofits (MAP for Nonprofits) organization. There are currently board member openings for 25+ different MN non-profits at MAP for Nonprofits: Click here to learn more:



2011 “40 under 40” nominations are being sought by the Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal (via Tammy Mencel/Mark Reilly) Nomination deadline is January 14, 2011.

Nominate someone by clicking the link below:

See profiles of 150+ other MN “40 under 40” alumni via their LinkedIn group here:

See profiles of 685 MN & national “40 under 40” alumni via their LinkedIn group here:

An Ole writing for SNL?! Yes! See story about Shelly Gossman’s (St. Olaf class of ’99) journey to becoming a writer for SNL here:

The Bush Foundation is seeking applicants for the 2011 “Bush Fellowship” program. Application deadline is February 25, 2011. More information via the secure link below:

American Red Cross – Twin Cities Chapter is seeking nominations for “2011 Heroes”. Learn more and access a nomination form via the link below. (via Marcia Ballinger)

Fun story from Gene Rebeck in Twin Cities Business about how local firm PUNY Entertainment found its way to working with Yo Gabba Gabba!

Congrats Nurses on topping Gallup’s annual “Honesty & Ethics Professions Survey”!
Full list

High school runner crawls across finish line to win race for an ailing coach (via New York Times)

The best Fast Company stories from their first 150 issues

The “Top 100 Global Thinkers” as identified by Foreign Policy magazine
Full list

Seth Godin on “Where do ideas come from?”
Seth’s Blog

Fast Company seeks nominations for “Most Influential Women in Tech 2011”:

Notre Dame Pre-Med student seeks Oncology Shadow opportunity Jan 10-14.  Allison Vos, Science/Business/Theology major in her junior year at Notre Dame, is interested in shadowing a physician for 2-4 days during her winter break – prefers oncology but open to anything.  Send questions, ideas, or contact info to (via Jim Vos)

MinnPost’s YPN is currently forming two volunteer committees and we need your participation!
MinnPost YPN – (via – Audra Otto) – We want to utilize your wide-ranging skills and expertise to make YPN a fun, informative, and helpful resource for young professionals across Minnesota. Participating in a YPN committee will insure your great ideas and innovations get heard and allow you to shape YPN going forward.

The Event Committee will help with planning and securing sponsorship for special events such as happy hours, trivia nights, bowling nights, group leader get-togethers, and full-scale all-member parties.

The Acquisitions Committee will primarily help curate and develop content for the YPN page. This group will also help in the development and implementation of marketing strategies to spread the word about YPN and increase member and community involvement. Committee meetings will be held no more than once a month, at the MinnPost offices in Minneapolis. The first committee meetings will take place in mid-January.

If you are interested in joining one of the YPN committees, please email or before Monday, Dec. 20, 2010.

Nominate “Grassroots Organizer of the Year” (via Diane Tran)

Nominations are currently being accepted for the Minnesota Business Ethics Award (MBEA). Now in its 12th year, the MBEA recognizes Minnesota businesses that have exemplified and promoted ethical conduct for the benefit of the workplace, marketplace, environment and the community.

Has an organization impressed you with its commitment to the highest standards of ethical business conduct? It could be your company or one of your customers, suppliers or competitors. Once you have identified an organization(s) to be nominated, please visit and click on “Nominate a Business”.  You can complete the very brief form online or print it out and fax it in. Award recipients will be recognized at an awards luncheon banquet on May 18, 2011. (via David Rodbourne)

Tim Brown of IDEA on “Design Thinking”



To Steve Wasnick and Mill City Auctions on being selected as one of 4 finalists for $125,000 entrepreneurship contest sponsored by Microsoft and Sprint.

Kathy Grayson of MSP Biz Journal shares more in the article

Vote to support Steve/Mill City Auctions in the contest via the secure link below:

Aaron and Nena Street on their new daughter – Mary Louise (Mary Lou) Street

To 2nd Harvest Heartland and St. Olaf College communities for ending up atop their respective categories in the GiveMN “Give to the Max Day” challenge:

Kate Rubin on her leadership profile in Twin Cities Business (TCB) magazine

Lee Odden and Susan Misukanis of TopRank Online Marketing on their TCB profile

To team at CoCo Coworking on their appearance in Dana Severson’s TCB blog
TCB Blog

To Dan Grigsby and Drivetrain co-founders on a successful launch event and raising enough $/food donations to provide meals for 1,000 families at Second Harvest Heartland in the process!

MCAD President Jay Coogan on his profile in

Corrie Knudson on her new role as Executive Director of Concordia Creative Learning Academy Foundation

Matt Meents of Reside on his TECHdotMN profile

Jim Bernard on his new role as SVP, Digital for the Star Tribune

Mark Giga on his new role as Communications Director for the Minnesota Business Partnership

Marshall Lichty on his new role with Hallberg & McClain, P.A. in St. Paul

Sona Mehring and all staff of CaringBridge on their recognition and profile as a cover story in current issue of Twin Cities Business, “CaringBridge Comes of Age in an Age of Social Media”:

Paul DeBettignies (aka MN Headhunter) on his recognition as a “2010 Top 25 Digital HR Influencer” from Congrats Paul!

Debra Hays on her new role as Managing Supervisor Fleishman-Hillard – Minneapolis Office

Chuck Tombarge on being electedVice Chair of the Avenues for Homeless Youth Board of Directors. More information about the organization is available at:

Daniel S. Johnson and Tom Weaver on being elected to the ClearWay Minnesota Board of Directors

Congratulations to the 2010 Ten Outstanding Young Minnesotans named by the Minnesota Jaycees this year. Video profiles on each honoree can be found at (via Trisha Reinwald)

MinnPost Young Professionals Network launch event — 26 MN young professionals group represented. An event slideshow available here:

To Goff & Howard, Inc. and McClung Communications & Public Relations, LLC on their announcement they are forming a strategic partnership to work together on public affairs and public relations projects in Minnesota and across the country. The partnership brings together the experienced team at Goff & Howard, a full-service public affairs and public relations firm with a staff of 13 founded in 1994, with McClung Communications & Public Relations, started this June by former gubernatorial spokesman and deputy chief of staff to Governor Tim Pawlenty, Brian McClung. (via Chris Tiedeman)
The GH Spin

Jane Eastwood on her new role as education policy director for the City of Saint Paul  



15 million people have enjoyed this “flash mob” rendition of the Hallelujah Chorus in a mall food court and you might too!

Need an interesting gift idea?? Name a new math theorem for someone on your gift list!

Crazy freestyle bicycling video (via Nate Eklund)
You Tube

See if you can pass this 8th grade test administered in 1931 (via Washington Post)
Washington Post

Amazing pictures from 2010 National Geographic Photography Contest:



NEW POLLENITES (& representative sample of the companies/organizations they represent)

Thanks for your continued referrals, forwards, and invitations to your friends and colleagues to join us.

We’ve grown to 1,602 Pollen subscribers and 1,509 members of our LinkedIn group thanks to your efforts. Thank you!

Welcome to 106, yes 106, new Pollenites who’ve joined us since our last issue! Note: this # now includes my best effort to welcome Pollenites who are joining our LinkedIn group only (If I missed you, please let me know! If you’re inadvertently being recognized for a second time, a double welcome to you!):

New Pollenites: Erik Aamoth, James Afdahl, Sharon Anderson, Jean Andreasen, Liza Atkinson, Lindsay Bacher, John Blaska, Tamara Block, Chadburn Blomquist, Teresa Bonner, Cathy Braaten, Amanda Brouwer, Shawn Brumbaugh, Nicole Bryant, Kate Cannon, Brent Carlson-Lee, Carrie Coleman, Dave Colling, Amy Crawford, Melissa Dargay, Kari Erickson, Bonnie Fast, Jim Fitzsimmons, Deborah Fitzsimmons, Connie Fukuda, Colin Gallagher, Sonal Gerten, Brady Gervais, Ben Gervais, David Glenn, Steve Goodyear, Rachel Greenhouse, Richard Groonwald, Rory Groves, Valerie Gunderson, Kellie Haehnel, Barbara Hahn, Dave Haugen, Marilee Hedberg, Jonathan Heimarck, Kalue Her, Connie Hines, Steve Huck, Katie Imholte, Susan Isebrand, Ann Johnson, Todd Johnson, Kyle Katoski, David Kersten, Melissa Kjolsing, Rick Korab, Andrew Korf, Rene Kraus, Paulita LaPlante, Patterson Leeth, Angela Leigh, Martin Ludden

JoAnne Makela, Jay Maloney, Carrie Marsh, Jeanne Massey, Peter McCluskey, Pat McIlvenna, Jeffrey Miller, Paul Miller, David Miller, Kelli Millslagle, Joe Munnich, Jess Myers, Lynn Nelson, Shawn O’Donnell, Lanae Paaverud, Roslyn Paterson, Jill Pearson-Wood, Garth Peterson, Kenna Poppler, Chris Reedy, Jill Saunders, Brenda Shafer-Pellinen, Nadia Siddiqui, Kathy Sims, Brant Skoglund, Maggie Snetting, Amy Softich, Lisa Stockmo, Michelle Stone-Light, Patti Stuhlman, Kendra Sundvall, Terri Swanson, Patrick Troska, Meredith Utt Olson, Michelle Van Engen, Wendy Volkman, Sherry Wagner-Henry, Lori Wall, Dan Wick, Lucinda Winter, Christina Woodlee, Mathew Woodlee, Kevin Worden, Bill Worple, Libby Wyrum, Sarah Young, Edith Young

Representative Companies/Organizations of new Pollen members: Additional Testing, Inc., Advent Creative Group, ARAnet, Best Buy, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities, BioBusiness Alliance of MN, C3 Media & Consulting, Cargill, CaringBridge, Carlson School of Management, Cass County, Chamilia, Inc., Delta Dental of MN, Eli’s Donut Burgers, Everspring Health, FairVote Minnesota, Family Philanthropy Advisors, Greater Twin Cities United Way, Himle Horer, Honeywell, Hope Chest for Breast Cancer, IDeaS Revenue Optimization, Lawson, Lee Hecht Harrison, LifeTIme Fitness, LIN Public Relations, Lowry Hill, Minnesota Reading Corps, MN Film & TV Board, MN House of Representatives, MN Senate, Neighborhood House, Padilla Speer Beardsley, Rochester Area Habitat for Humanity, SABIS Educational Systems, Saint Paul Public Schools, Salo Search, LLC., Scholarship America, Send Out Cards, Social Networking Nanny, space150, St. Olaf College, SWIFT Weather, Target Financial Services, TEDxTC, The Advent Group, The Jay and Rose Phillips Family Foundation, The Saint Paul Hotel, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, University of Minnesota, University of Minnesota Foundation, US Bank, Wells Fargo

Huge thank you’s to the Pollenites who directly referred a new member to Pollen! (If you were omitted, please let me know!)

Pollen Recruiters:

Kari Anderson, Bill Breon, Jen Ford Reedy, Dan Haugen, Rebekah Kent, Dan Miller, Garth Peterson, Sara Thurin Rollin, Stephanie Schiller Wissink, Chuck Tombarge, Tom Trow, Jim Vos, Kevin Worden

LinkedIn Pollen Group:

1,509, yes 1,509 Pollenites have subscribed to our LinkedIn group (including 90+ new members who joined since our last edition).

Why join Pollen on LinkedIn?

You can share articles, updates, and post questions for immediate comment/feedback from your fellow members in addition to connecting your LinkedIn networks.

You can join Pollen’s LinkedIn group

Finally, if you find value from Pollen, could you please take a minute and subscribe to Culture Matters, the quarterly e-newsletter produced for our client community at KeyStone Search.

You can subscribe by clicking here.

You can view our most recent issue here.

Thank you!!

Lars Leafblad
KeyStone Search
Ph: 612-375-8989

Subscribe to KeyStone’s quarterly e-newsletter, Culture Matters, here.

Readers interested in joining Pollen should email Lars Leafblad directly at